Isle of Wight Council news: 8 December 2020
At Christmas COVID-19 restrictions will be eased for a few days so that people can mix with a slightly wider circle of family and friends.
Across the UK you will be able to form exclusive ‘Christmas bubbles’ of three households over a five days from 23 to 27 December.
Don’t miss out on the opportunity to spend time with family and friends this festive time — but please do so safely. Please aim to reduce unnecessary contact with people you do not live with in the two weeks before Christmas (from 9 December) and keep your Christmas bubble as small as possible.
Between 23 and 27 December you can:
- form an exclusive Christmas bubble composed of people from no more than three households;
- only be in one Christmas bubble;
- travel between tiers and UK nations for the purposes of meeting your Christmas bubble;
- only meet your Christmas bubble in private homes or in your garden, places of worship, or public outdoor spaces;
- continue to meet people who are not in your Christmas bubble outside your home according to the rules in the tier you are meeting in; for us this means maintaining the ‘rule of six’. If you form a Christmas bubble, you should not meet socially with friends and family that you do not live with in your home or garden unless they are part of your Christmas bubble.
You cannot change your Christmas bubble. You should travel to meet those in your Christmas bubble and return home between the 23 and 27 December.
If you don’t chose to form a Christmas bubble then the ‘rule of six’ continues to apply. Please meet in a socially distanced way and in well ventilated spaces.
Remember, if you or a member of your household starts to experience symptoms of COVID-19 – a new and continuous cough; loss or change of taste or smell, or; a high temperature – you should self-isolate immediately. Got symptoms? Self-isolate and book a test. Please don’t risk the health of your friends or family if you get symptoms.
For more information on Christmas bubbles is available on the government’s website.
Socialise safely this festive season
We’re still in Tier 1 (medium risk) – and we’re lucky that we still have more freedoms than most of the country. To keep our case numbers low and our Tier 1 status intact, we must all keep doing what we can to keep the Island safe. The government will review all tiers next week (16 December) – we want to stay in Tier 1 – the lowest tier of restrictions.
If you’re thinking of going out to celebrate the festive season, please help our hospitality businesses by:
- booking your table in advance – hospitality is busy;
- making sure you know what the venue’s rules are;
- wearing a face-covering;
- not mixing between tables – keep to the ‘rule of six’;
- drinking alcohol responsibly;
- planning for the end of the night when it is time to go home so that you get home safely;
- remembering #HandsFaceSpace.
“Following our first weekend in Tier 1, I’d like to thank everyone who played their part to help us keep the Island safe,” said Councillor Dave Stewart, Leader of the Isle of Wight Council.
“From our hospitality and tourism businesses who’ve put all their COVID-19 safe arrangements in place, to our Regulatory Services teams, COVID-19 support officers and police colleagues who worked collectively across the weekend to deal with any incidents, to our community who conducted themselves sensibly; thank you.
“I know it’s not the same as a normal December, when many people would usually be celebrating with friends, family and work colleagues at Christmas parties and events. This year, we have to think differently.
“We don’t want to stop people having a good time, but want to encourage people to be responsible so that our community can have an enjoyable and safe festive season while keeping coronavirus cases down. We want to stay in Tier 1 when the country is reviewed again next week; so please, just because we can do more than most people across the country when it comes to socialising, it doesn’t mean we should.”
As we head back to town-centre shops for COVID-19 safe shopping this festive season free parking in car parks and on street is available at set times across the Island this December.
Free parking opportunities have been spread out in order to allow shoppers to choose less busy times to visit their favourite stores.
Most stores and businesses will be open as normal, with COVID-19 safe approaches in store. Despite the unusual trading conditions this year there will be some attractive deals to be had on Isle of Wight quality goods and produce.
Free parking is available as follows:
- On-street in Newport for 30 minutes, every day, until New Year’s Eve (with financial support from Newport and Carisbrooke Community Council)
- Off-street parking in all Island council long-stay car parks from 3pm until 6pm, every day until New Year’s Eve.
- On Christmas Eve, off-street parking in every long-stay council car park all day until 6pm.
Business owners across the whole Island are working hard to keep everyone safe, and you can expect that as stores reopen, they will have new ways to shop and keep staff and customers socially distanced.
The council is also supporting businesses to open at times and in ways to suit them, regardless of any planning regulations they may previously had to adhere to, in line with government guidance. All licensing or regulatory legislation still applies.
These are the latest published COVID-19 stats for the Isle of Wight, from Public Health England.
You can read the full COVID-19 data report on our website.
The graphic shows the COVID-19 statistics for the Isle of Wight, published by Public Health England on 7 December 2020 including data up to 6 December 2020.
The graphic shows:
- 994 – The number of confirmed cases to date of Island residents who have received a positive COVID-19 test result since March 2020. This is based on the residential address of the person tested rather than where they are registered with a GP.
- 30 – The number of positive cases in the seven-day period.
- 21.2 – Weekly cases per 100,000. This is the number of Island residents who have received a positive COVID-19 test result in the seven-day period, divided by the total population of the Island.
It is vital we all continue to follow the government guidelines during national restrictions: hands, face, space.
- Wash your hands often and for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitiser regularly.
- Wear a face-covering where appropriate.
- Keep space from other people; two metres or at least one metre apart.